Victoria’s sole F-League entrant Vic Vipers opened up a healthy eight-point lead in the 2016 Men’s PUMA F-League following double-victory in the nation’s capital as East Coast split their Queensland road-trip, while Galaxy took Queensland-derby honours and Boomerangs won the all-ACT clash to end an 18-game losing run.
The Vics’ 27 competition points (having played a couple of extra matches) heads Dural (19), East Coast (16), Galaxy (14) and Inner West (13) in what looks likely to be a gripping battle for the top four places.
The Golden Boot is also nicely poised with Vipers star Adam Cooper (15), South Brisbane’s Adam Stacey (13), Warriors’ Wade Giovenali (10), Galaxy’s Samim Rohani (9), North Canberra’s Brett Forward (8) and Viper Victor Brauner (8) in the running (particularly as Cooper and Stacey have the least games remaining).
Boomerangs FS 4 (Jake Wilsener 2, Jonathan Ciminelli, Daniel Giovinazzo) North Canberra Untouchables 2 (Jason Farrell, Victor Yanes)
Galaxy FC 4 (Scott Fenn, Ryo Yazawa, Samim Rohani) East Coast Heat 4 (Anthony Haddad, Matthew Mazevski, Alex Vlismas, Lachlan Wright)
Boomerangs FS 1 (Elie Darwich) Vic Vipers 8 (Adam Cooper 3, Konrad Machoy, Alistair Dunlop, Cosimo Russo)
South Brisbane 5 (Dallas Dack, James Egeta, Pedro Goldgrub, Adam Stacey 2) East Coast Heat 7 (Daniel Fulton, Anthony Haddad, Grant Lynch 3, Christopher Zeballos 2)
North Canberra Untouchables 2 (Victor Yanes 2) Vic Vipers 4 (Jason Barrientos, Jonathan Barrientos, Adam Cooper, Konrad Machoy)
Galaxy FC 6 (Scott Fenn 2, Samim Rohani, Adam Finocchiaro, Jayden Bordin, own goal) South Brisbane 3 (Caleb Urlich 2, Adam Stacey)
Boomerangs beat Untouchables
Boomerangs FS downed cross-town rival North Canberra Untouchables 4-2 at the AIS Training Halls on Friday night, finally lowering the curtain on their excruciating 18-match losing sequence.
Several hundred spectators braved a cold Canberra winter’s night to see who would claim local bragging rights, and it was Untouchables who sprinted out of the starting gate faster than their hosts with NCU captain Jason Farrell knocking one past Boomerangs keeper Ashley Collins in the first minute.
Boomerangs responded in kind not 90 seconds later when Jake Wilsener finished off a nice series of passes to put it past Untouchables custodian Ray Moon, and the game maintained its pace and intensity with settled defences denying any more goals; Boomerangs playmaker Wilsener suffered what looked to be a game-ending injury toward the end of the half and a number of other players were also feeling the toll of a physical match.
With just 90 seconds left on the first-half clock, Boomerangs star Robbie Cattanach slammed a shot toward goal that was fended by Moon into the path of a prowling Daniel Giovinazzo who calmly slotted home to lift his side 2-1 in front at the break.
The match continued with the same intensity in the second stanza, with both defences working overtime to ensure the scoreline didn’t blow out – keepers Collins and Moon matching each other in goal to ensure the game would go down to the wire.
Victor Yanes scored for Untouchables seven minutes into the half to bring the game back to par at 2-2 and the players lifted another notch for the final period of play, Boomerangs benefitting from some slick interplay between Elie Darwich and Wilsener for the latter to slot home and take a 3-2 lead with four minutes on the clock.
North Canberra called time-out and went to fifth-man play with speedy Brett Forward taking up the position, but the gamble backfired when Jonathan Ciminelli took possession from Yanes high up court and calmly rolled the ball into an unguarded net to hand Boomerangs supremacy in this local-derby round.
Incidentally, the last time Boomerangs tasted F-League victory was against Capital FC in last year’s ACT-clash (way back in round four).
Vipers bundle Boomerangs
Competition leaders Vic Vipers made thrift work of bottom-side Boomerangs FS 8-1 at the AIS Training Halls on Saturday afternoon, a 6-1 halftime lead making all the difference as a depleted home side dug in after the changeover.
Boomerangs were missing several players to injury (many from the previous night’s local derby), plus unavailability and suspension and at stages were required to use their back-up keeper as an on-field player.
As expected the Vics provided some quality Futsal and looked in command from the early stages producing an opening goal to Adam Cooper in the sixth minute and the scoring maintained a regular beat until the halftime-hooter sounded with Vipers five goals ahead, Elie Darwich scoring for the Territorians.
Boomerangs dug deep in the second half and they worked hard defensively to stop the rout, restricting the southerners to just two further goals; but the Victorian powerhouse club have now won eight of their 11 Boomerangs meetings and Cooper (who finished with a hat-trick) has plugged nine past them in the last four encounters.
Cooper’s eighth F-League hat-trick also pegs him alongside goalscoring freak Jarrod Basger and former Vipers team-mate Fernando De Moraes as the most in the men’s competition.
But while we praise an experienced campaigner, special mention must go to Boomerangs teenage rookie sensation Darwich who’s already showing he has the capability to match it with Australia’s best (and kicked a couple of national-league goals in his first few starts to prove it).
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